The Building Blocks of Geologyby: Betty O. Gibson

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Elementary level students often have difficulty grasping the difference between minerals and rocks. Because minerals and rocks are basic to the understanding and study of Earth science, knowledge of their characteristics and relationships is critical to learning. To that end—the author, a geologist and former science consultant, presents some effective, inquiry-based activities using Legos® (or other similar building blocks) and cereal to help students differentiate between minerals and rocks.

  • Elementary
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Reviews (2)
  • on Thu Feb 18, 2016 12:27 PM

Overall this was a great article that gave some pretty useful activities for teaching Geology, more specifically rocks and minerals. I definitely appreciated the detailed description of the methods Gibson used for teaching young students about rocks and minerals. I think that when teaching students, no matter what the content area is, it is important to include hands on activities. Doing this helps include students who learn tactile kinesthetically instead of only catering to the auditory and visual learners. Also I am a strong proponent of the constructivist approach so any way that I can use manipulatives in the classroom is a benefit for me. Lastly, I think that Gibson’s use of discussion at the end of each activity not only strengthens her students’ understanding of rocks and minerals but it also helps them retain the information better through application.


  • on Sun Feb 06, 2011 4:58 PM

The article is a very good article however it says four pages but once you click on it to view it in pdf form there are only 2 pages.


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